November 9th, 2009

Rates Eased Last Week



Mortgage rates seem to be one of the more consistent and stable economic factors that we’re following these days. According to the latest issue of HSH’s Market Trends Newsletter, “Rates Still ‘Exceptionally Low‘,” the conforming 30-year fixed rate closed our survey week at 5.13% at a quarter-point fee level.

“The Federal Reserve re-committed to keeping the short-term interest rates it controls at ‘exceptionally low’ levels for an undefined ‘extended period of time.’ Along with the extension and expansion of the homebuyer tax credit, these important supports should help the housing market to continue to stabilize, and may even serve to promote some refinancing activity, too.”

“The overall average for mortgage rates, measured by HSH’s Fixed-Rate Mortgage Indicator (FRMI), eased back by four basis points this week, as the average price of all loans — conforming, jumbo and agency jumbo combined — slipped to 5.41%. The overall average for 5/1 Hybrid ARMs dipped by three basis points, and conforming 30-year FRMs closed the survey at 5.13% at a quarter-point fee level.”

A thorn that has remained firmly in place in the economy’s side has been the job market. Despite “only” 190,000 jobs lost during October, and the fact that August and September’s figures were ratcheted downward as well, the unemployment rate continues to rise to what some have called an “alarming” level.

“Over the last three months jobs are still being shed, but at a pace less than one-third that seen in the Jan-Mar 2009 period. Still, even though the rate of new layoffs has eased, there are no new jobs to be found for those who lost them. The all-inclusive unemployment rate which factors under-employed and those who have stopped seeking work is actually about 17.5% of the total eligible population.”

Click here to continue reading “Rates Still ‘Exceptionally Low’.” HSH’s free weekly Market Trends Newsletter, an in-depth analysis of various financial markets of the week prior, is published every Monday. Email subscribers receive it in your inbox by Friday night, so sign up today! Also, be sure to check in with our Market Trends blog for all news relating to any weekly shift in mortgage rates.

What do we think the long-term outlook for mortgage rates looks like? Read our latest two-month forecast to find out.

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About the HSH Blog's daily blog focuses on the latest developments in the mortgage and housing markets. Our mission is to relate how changes in mortgage rates and housing policy, as well as the latest financial news, impacts consumers, homebuyers and industry insiders alike. Our 30-plus years of experience in the mortgage industry gives us an edge as we break down the latest changes in an ever-changing market.

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Tim Manni

Tim Manni is the Managing Editor of and the author of their daily blog, which concentrates on the latest developments in the mortgage and housing markets.

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